Google recently released It's online version of Google Sky, an application that will let you explore the universe right from your seat. With this release, what is so great about it that you do not need to download anything and that It can be accessed directly from your browser. Google's lat long blog had stated that the following features are included in the web based version of Google Sky:
- Powerful search that lets you browse tens of thousands of named objects.
- Three optical sky surveys that show you what your naked eye would see if it had a really good zoom lens. Try switching to infrared, microwave, ultraviolet, or x-ray to see the sky in a completely different light. Or blend between these views to create unique visualizations on the fly.
- Galleries highlighting the best images from Hubble and many other telescopes.
- Current planet positions and constellations.
- Overlays of custom KML content. (Simply paste a Sky KML URL into the search box, just like on Google Maps.)
- Last but not least, the Earth & Sky podcasts gallery is not to be missed, particularly for those who run a classroom.
In addition, Google was recently sued by a former Google employee for stealing the idea from him. He mentioned that he hisclosed the idea at internal e-mail discussion groups when he worked at Google as a contractor in the beginning of 2006.
"The Google Earth Sky layer, when it launched in August 2007, was similar in interface and functionality to what he had conceptualized, Cobb claims."